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Women’s History Month is ending, and I would just like to say:

I’m proud to be a woman.

I’m thankful for the women who have come before me, the strong ones who fought for my rights to choose, vote, and be heard. I’m thankful for the women in science, math, industry, politics, and overall have challenged the stereotypes of their fields, and the ones who may not have spoke out, but continued to love and raise their families; that takes a different kind of strength.

I have my strengths and weaknesses. I am real. I am a real woman. I’d say I’m a rather complex, real woman. I don’t want to go into a complete tirade here, though I’d love to discuss it more. It’s just that I have been reading a lot of literature concerning female characters and arguing about femininity, feminism, and the social backlash against women lately. I am moved by the stories of other women (Bonnie Bremser and Hettie Jones), and I have thought about myself as a woman.

Of course, I’ve begun to question who I really am lately.

I’ve actually started to reject my normal behavior.

It scares me and excites me.

I don’t know where I’m going, but I know where I have been and where I am now.

In the end, I just want to be happy, and I want to be a woman I am comfortable with, no matter what anyone else thinks.After all, it is my life, and I have rights. That’s all that should really matter.

So, to the women before me: THANK YOU!

To my female comrades: I appreciate you and embrace you!

And to the women after me: Make the world yours, and be who you truly feel to be.

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I’ve been working on being more optimistic lately. I’ll admit, it’s hard, but I think I’m starting to see myself again. Not necessarily as wonderful as I once saw myself to be, but a little happier. The most important part, probably, is finding that time for myself. I think that definitely shows from last week’s roundup.

Last weekend I went home, got a haircut, ate good food, got a checking account (Goal #61!), watched Zombieland and Planet Terror with my mom, and slept. A lot. I didn’t get much homework done, and I don’t know, I got overwhelmed by thinking about the amount of work I have to do this week – I have two separate group projects that can only meet outside of class in certain time constraints and I’ve picked up three extra shifts at work over the next two weeks. I had a freak-out. I’m better now, and it’s still sort of scary and sad to know what I have to do, but I’ll make it.

Yesterday I had work from 7:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m., ate lunch, went to class, and then went back to work from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. I did some homework, and then I went to see Alex and have dinner. I had group meeting #1 at 6:30, and it went well. I got back to my room and did more homework, when I got a text from Leigh. Even though I had to work in the morning, I joined her, Alex, and Dirk at the Heorot – my first time. Even though I only had one drink (and 1/4 of Alex’s), my exhaustion quickly made me into a giggly girl. I went back, and as soon as my head hit the pillow, I was out.
I woke up this morning smiling.

I thought, “I can do this.”

I thought, “Today will be a good day.”

For the most part, I’d say this has been a good day. Work went well, only had one class (fiction writing is canceled this week), and read and relaxed. I even got some homework done.  Alex and I met up, but he was feeling sick. I was disappointed since I won’t see him much this week, but I figured I’d be okay.
The thing is, I just had a compulsion not to eat dinner on campus. I am so sick of campus food. I knew I shouldn’t be spending the money, but I went down to Scotty’s Brewhouse and had a drink and ate some cheese fries. It’s quite lonely sitting at a bar without friends; I have vowed this will not happen again. I went back to my room and did some more reading (for somewhat school/pleasure), and then I hung out with Teddy after his night class for a bit. We haven’t done that in a long time. I miss that kid.

Oh well, nothing too exciting. But I’m feeling better already.

Okay, it’s March. Late March.

I wore a skirt yesterday. It was pretty outside.

Today, it rained a cold rain, and tonight, it snowed.

Snow? What the hell?

Anyway, last week was difficult. I was having a hard time making the transition from my nice break to the normal rhythm of school. I really wanted to go home, and I called my mom again, upset.

However, I can say that things are getting better. Life is good! I mean, really, it’s good! I just have to get past all the sad feelings I’ve felt so often as of late.

This week, I have enjoyed:

  • Playing Arkham Horror until 2:00 a.m.
  • Driving practice, including an extended trip to Daleville.
  • Watching Star Trek: Deep Space Nine with Alex, even though we have six more discs of the second season, and five whole seasons after that to get through.
  • Getting all my assignments done on time and NOT freaking out!
  • Reading ahead in my classes, and reading things I enjoy.
  • Praise from Dr. Bogue for my fiction piece and my in-class discussion points.
  • Warm weather that allowed me to walk to Hobby Lobby and wear aforementioned skirt.
  • Starting a new knitting project, which consequently kept me warm tonight.
  • Watching classic movies on my own time.
  • Receiving a letter from my grandparents.
  • Receiving a surprise package from my aunt and uncle, including homemade chocolate chip cookies and Girl Scout cookies.
  • Watching Animal Planet with my “wife,” Ruu.
  • Dancing to the Talking Heads.
  • Donating blood (I filled the blood donation bag in five minutes!)
  • Spending time with friends…

… and just generally, the feeling of being happy. I like that. May the sun shine, may it get warmer, may life continue to be good and may myself learn to be comfortable with where I’m going and where I am right now.

I’m a few months in on my 101 Goal project, and I figured I’d make this post about my progress. I have been updating it some, but it seems like I’m working on a lot of them at the same time, so it’s taking longer to accomplish them. Also, some of my goals involve other parties (such as Alex), and that limits whether or not they are attained. However, I feel happy and confident when I think about it. I just have to keep going and stay focused. I truly believe that I can accomplish these things, and I will be a better person for them.

So, anyways, an update.

Accomplished Goals (7/101 – Yeah, I know how it looks.):

7. Write a list of 101 things/reasons why I love Alex, and share it with him.

26. Do a crossword puzzle every day for a month.

34. Bake a chocolate cake, complete with frosting, from scratch.

50. Fly kites with Alex.

51. Mail a love note.

68. Go to the Artist Within and paint a piece of pottery.

72. Put all my music, videos, pictures, and other documents on an external hard drive.

Goals Actively, as of Now, in Progress:

1. Receive my driver’s license. I’m practicing more now that the snow has melted. Also getting better, and very excited.

8. Update my blog at least seven times a month for a year. Haha.

14. Knit a blanket. It’s pretty, but SO WARM to work with!

16. Knit the Companion Cube for Alex. I have the yarn, and I’m practicing steeking. Getting closer…

17. Learn how to crochet. I’ve learned how to do a granny square, and I’ve done another simple project, but I’m not ready to say that I’ve completed it yet.

21. Write 10 original short non-fiction works.

22. Write 10 original short fiction works. I’ve been writing a lot lately, but I need to just complete things.

27. Read 15 of the Modern Library’s 100 Best Novels (From either the Board or the Readers’ choice lists) that I haven’t read before. I’ve read 2 of the 15 so far.

28. Watch 15 Movies off of AFI’s Top 100 Movies that I haven’t seen before. Also, I only have 2 films watched out of the 15.

47. Grow my hair long enough to braid it. I’m trying, but my hair is stubborn, it seems.

49. Rent an apartment. We’ve signed a lease, but we won’t officially begin renting until August.

57. Donate blood for 8 quarters (that I’m eligible) in a row. Twice so far, third time soon!

61. Open a checking account, or see if it is possible. I aim to get one next weekend.

95. Finish playing Portal. Alex is letting me play, but it’s been a few weeks since I’ve done it.

So there we go, a little push on my part. I assure you, I’m not ignoring it. I wish I had more time and money, but that’s one of the challenges I can deal with. But believe me, completing this list is not as simple as it seems.

I returned to school today after a week in Atlantic Beach, North Carolina. I spent it with Alex and five of our friends, as I wrote about previously. We discovered and ate Bojangles’ biscuits for the first time, played board games, shopped at Food Lion (we’ve never seen any of those before, either), listened to mix CDs on the car rides (and sang along), visited Fort Macon, ate cheesecake and leftover Bojangles’ fried chicken for breakfast (though not the same morning), slept until noon most days, collected seashells, sank our toes into the sand, watched the sunsets…

… went to the aquarium and saw all sorts of neat things – I loved the jellyfish…

… flew kites on the beach (coincidentally, #50 on my list!)…

… and most of all, escaped. We (or at least, most of us) ditched our laptops, turned off our alarms, breathed fresh air, connected with nature and with ourselves, and relaxed. I feel like I bonded with everyone a bit better, and even if we were together all week, there was no agitation or arguing. We forgot about homework, stress, and the pressures we deal with constantly –  no tears, no anxiety.

We were completely and utterly happy. I loved it.

Yeah, that’s how this week has been. A nice descent into Hell and back, but I guess that’s how the week before spring break should be.

Monday, I worked, went to class, and didn’t do much else besides homework and finished my first mitten. It’s comfy and warm and – oh look, I’m going to finish my mittens just in time for the warm spring weather!

Tuesday, I had more work, and then Alex drove me to Pendleton to get my suitcase, since I needed one for our trip – oh yeah, I’m actually going somewhere this year! I forgot to mention that! We didn’t hang out because he was tired and I was tired, and I did more homework (and played Peggle Nights).

Wednesday, I was supposed to have a group meeting, but things were messed up so I was waiting for my guys at 9:30, but they never showed. I later found out that “Reply to All” had not been hit, so that botched things up. Oh well, I did more homework and waited around for lunch. I went to class, had a meeting with one of my professors, went to the class of the professor I just talked to, had our short group meeting, went to dinner, and then went to another class. Woo. I got back, and Ryn invited me to IHOP, and I was going to decline, but Teddy said he’d buy me pancakes. I don’t turn down free pancakes. The three of us were joined by Pete, Laura, Lemmy, and Mia, and it was a lot of fun except I think the coffee I drank messed up my stomach, and I’ve felt nauseated and had a scratchy throat since I woke up on Thursday. I hope I’m not getting sick again. That would so piss me off.

Thursday was a bit better, and I actually got to see Alex. Sort of. He came over, and we were watching Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, but I fell asleep. He woke me up and went to dinner, and I felt bad for falling asleep because I haven’t spent much time with him this week. However, we’re going to see each other a lot in the next week or so, and the space is probably necessary.

Today has been decent. I couldn’t sleep last night and only got four hours, maybe. I had a midterm in my first class, and I swear, I was hysterical and shaking. I need this break more than people realize. I am insane. I had never laughed so much in my other class, either. I loved my professor’s comments about margaritas, and how we weren’t supposed to be drinking until after we turned in our big paper (I’ve done it! Finally!).

Anyway, now I’m done with classes, and it’s time for me to go and pack. I’m going on a grand adventure with Alex, Sarah, Thom, Chris, Nick, and Blake to North Carolina. We’re leaving tonight between 8:00 and 10:00, and then we’re going to crash at my house the night before we come back to the dorms. I have vowed not to take my laptop with me because I really need to unplug for a while. I just can’t wait to be somewhere warm, relax, have some fun, and just be me for a while, without the insanity and stress of school.

So with that… adieu!

(And if I don’t write after I get back, I might be dead. Just saying.)

I know I haven’t written anything in a while. It’s been a busy week. I just wanted to write a quick thing about last weekend, and then the next post should (hopefully be about this week).

After a long, emotionally draining week, I had grilled garlic mashed potato, cheddar, and bacon sandwiches courtesy of Sarah and Thom. It sounds bizarre, I know, but don’t knock it until you try it. It’s surprisingly amazing.

I went back to my room and did some work, though I was distracted by Peggle Nights, which I recently got for free. Damn you, Peggle, and your addicting ways!

I switched shifts with Amanda last weekend so she would pick up this coming Saturday’s hours, and then because of absent workers, picked up an extra hour as well. We weren’t too busy, so I got some homework done, but I do think it is frustrating when I can’t really work because I’m the only assistant there. I went back to my room and cleaned it, and also took a nap.

Alex and I went to Steak ‘n’ Shake for dinner, and it was delicious and well-deserved. Then we returned to my room and watched A Fish Called Wanda. I had never seen it before, but I laughed a lot.

Sunday, I did more homework. I wrote a four-page paper on William S. Burroughs and the impact of his wife’s murder (which he committed) affected his writing. Very interesting topic. Burroughs is quite a crazy character. Then I found a book called Move Under Ground, which has Ginsberg, Kerouac, and Burroughs fighting Cthulhu. AWESOME! I haven’t started reading it yet, but I hope to.

Coincidentally, after Alex and I made very odd-shaped cookies (they were chocolate chip cookies in the shapes of animals – before baking), I ended up playing Arkham Horror with Matt, Alex, Geldes, and Thom on Sunday night. We beat the Elder God, but it was late when we finished. I enjoyed it, though, even if it is long and I’m not very good at board games.

That’s all for now. Must run to class. I’m so glad it’s Friday!